Oslo is the capital city of Norway. The population of the city proper is 610,000 (approx. 2012). The conurbation extends into the surrounding county of Akershus, with a total population of 825,105 (as of January 1, 2006, according to Statistics Norway), with a current annual growth exceeding 15,000 (in 2005 Oslo and Akershus had a growth of 15,472 according to Statistics Norway), a number which according to Statistics Norway is only expected to keep rising steadily making Oslo one of the fastest growing cities in Europe. The Oslo metropolitan area has a population of about 1.3 million, and about 1.7 million people live in the Oslofjord region. The metropolitan area of Oslo sprawls out on both sides of the Oslofjord of which the city center of Oslo is situated at the end of, giving the urban zone or region more or less the shape of a U turned upside down although it sprawls in all directions.
About 22 % of the population of Oslo are immigrants. The urban municipality (bykommune) of Oslo and county (fylke) is the same entity. Of Oslo's total area, 115 km² is built-up and 7 km² is agricultural. The open areas within the built-up zone amounts to 22 km². The forests in Oslo consist of 85 % needle trees and 15 % leaf trees. Animals such as elk, deer, pheasant and the rare lynx can be found outside of Oslo.
More facts, details and more on this link: Facts about Oslo
If you wonder what it's like in Oslo right now or the coming days, you can try and check this link out. It will tell you more than you need to know about humidity, length of the day (sunrise/sunset), winds, temperature, etc:
The weather forecast for Oslo
You can also check out these webcams showing different parts of Oslo.
Webcam 1 over Oslo
Webcam 2 over Oslo
Favorite thing: If you want to get your hands on some cash then you probably want to find an ATM (which is called "minibank" in norwegian - look for the "minibank" sign). In Oslo an many other of the "big" cities in Norway you will find that most McDonalds restaurants and 7 Eleven have ATM on their premisses. These are usually well recognized by most people from all around the world - so go and get it!
I always make sure I get a map of the places I'm going - it's always very helpful. If you take a look at the attached link you will find a map that enables you to close in on any detail you might be interested in in central Oslo.
Map of the central parts of Oslo
When we arrived at Bygdoy, I went for a walk in the park area by the Fram Museum. Here, I was surprised to find dozens of Geese feeding on the lawn.
They were Barnacle Geese, a medium sized, black and white goose.
They have a whitish head that has a black crown. The neck and breast are black, and the belly is white with grey mottling along the sides. The upper-parts of the bird are blue-grey with black and white stripes across the wings. The bill and legs are black.
The geese feed on grasses, clover and seeds and graze in quite big flocks. They are now a protected Bird.
By all means not my favourite thing to do in Oslo. I had to go here 3 times by train from Ski as new rules and regulations seem to be the favourite pastime of Norwegians, no offence thought, there must be a reason why you have to invent new rules with the floods of foreign workers coming to your country. But coming from Iceland I thought it would be a bit easier for us - seeing that we have a Nordic cooperation. This was not the case.
We wanted to register the address of my partner in the town of Ski. So off we went to the Skatt in Ski, where we waited for an hour only to be told that new rules applied and we could only register in Oslo now. So off we went to Oslo, but with new rules being applied in February 2012 now we needed a signed confirmation that my partner could live with his kids in the flat they were renting. And a signed confirmation from his kids that they were his kids, even though the surname was the same. Only in our 3rd attempt did we manage to hand in the papers, barely.
So if you ever want to register your address in Oslo get a signed confirmation from the owner of the flat. And then you have to show a work contract as well. And you have only 8 days to do this. And by registering your address you will also get a social security number (födselsnummer).
Fondest memory: Skatten
Skatt öst, where we had to register lies paralell to Oslo S train station in Schweigaardsgate 17 - and expect to wait for a long time with a lot of foreigners. Here you can also hand in your tax-report and get help with that.
This is one of my least favourite places in Oslo - as during my 2,5 month´s stay in Norway the mass-murderer Breivik was on trial. On the 22nd of July he killed 77 people, he bombed a Government building in Oslo and killed 8 people and shot 69 people in Utöya in the head, mostly young people who were vacationing there. He was protesting against muslims flooding Norway and claims that by doing this terrible act it would wake up the nation :(
The trial started at the same time as I arrived and lasted for the whole duration of my stay - and it was non-stop broadcasted on telly. I tried to avoid watching it, but there was no avoiding it as it was constantly on the news and I was forever seeing Breivik´s face on telly. So sad and frigthtening and disgusting, to say the least.
There were so many roses by the Courthouse during the trial - heartbreaking :(
The Courthouse - Oslo Tinghus is located by C. J. Hambros plass 4, very close to the city center.
There is another old factory in Oslo apart from the old sailcloth factory which now houses Högskolen i Oslo og Akershus - The University in Oslo and Akershus (one of the universities). The Frydenlund factory was a brewery, established in 1859, and was one of the largest breweries in Oslo.
The Frydenlund brandname became the first registered brandname in Norway.
Since 1994 The University in Oslo and Akershus has been located in the old factory complex.
I like this idea of using these old factory complexes for educational institutions.
It is located by Pilestredet in Oslo close to the city center.
While walking by the Akerselva river (see my off the beaten track tips) I came across this old factory complex, which is now The National Academy of the Arts in Oslo - Kunsthögskolen in Oslo.
This factory complex was an old sailcloth factory in 1858 - and stands by a lovely waterfall. This building used to be the second biggest building in Oslo - second only to Slottet - The Royal palace. People came down here especially just to have a look at this big building.
On a plaque by the Academy says (in Norwegian): "The factory was founded in 1858 and in 1885, 412 people worked here, most of them women. The daily pay was NOK 1,20. The factory closed down in 1960. Architect P.H. Holtermann".
The street by the factory is called Seilduksgata :) or The Sailcloth street and is in Grunerlökka.
When I was wandering around in the old part of town (Gamlebyen) and Grönland - looking for Kampen, I came across a very lovely playground. It was so different from other playgrounds that I had seen - and showed how multi-cultural this part of Oslo is.
The seats were small elephants and there was some Arabic (?) writing on the golden artwork. This looked more like a museum than a playground.
On one corner of Kjölberggata.
There are 4,6 million inhabitants in Norway. Norwegians are lovely people like Scandinavians on the whole. They are pretty much like Icelanders, so it was not a big cultural difference for me visiting Norway. I think both nations might come across as a bit "cold", but that is just on the outside - get to know them and they will warm up ;)
I have never seen so many beautiful women as I saw during my stay in Norway. I was amazed really to see how many beautiful young women there were, and impeccably dressed - they really stood out.
Everybody seemed to speak English. In the beginning of my stay I spoke my Danish with a Norwegian accent as I didn´t want to speak English. I hope they appreciated my effort. But as soon as they saw that I was having difficulties speaking - or if I asked if I could speak in English instead and they could answer in Norwegian, then almost everybody spoke perfect English, with an English accent. I couldn´t believe it, it was like I were speaking to Englishmen. Kudos to them!
Fondest memory: My first 3 photos are taken at Vigelandsparken park and the last two are taken on May 17th, Constitutional day.
Here are some links to finding a job in Norway. We went there to look for job and signed up with several job-agencies, and I found Jobbsafari to be one of the best agencies. And Orcus was very good as well.
The first thing to do is to go to Nav "The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Organisation" and EURES which is a job-search facility and a CV database.
Finn is a website for all possible things for sale, vacancies, how to meet people etc.
And Stillinger is a website with a list of websites with job vacancies. The Norwegian "ledige stillinger" means vacancies.
New in Norway is a website on how to settle in. And Utlendingsdirektoratet is the official website for the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration.
But you will find almost every information needed here Norway.
Knowing some Norwegian, written and spoken, is necessary if one wants to find a job in Norway - and in some cases English is necessary as well. Knowing "Scandinavian" i.e. Danish or Swedish, is ok as well, as these languages are very similar and they understand one another.
The first area I visited after my arrival in Oslo was the harbour. The atmosphere of ships and the Scandinavian evening sun gave me a certain holiday feeling. In the harbour both old sailing boats and modern cruise ships can be found.
Some famous ships are based in Oslo harbour. Among them are:
- Christian Radich, full-rigged ship, built in 1937
- M314 Alta, a wooden minesweeper (museum ship)
So if you need to go to a pharmacy in the middle of the night this is the only place in Oslo where you can get it
It's quite busy in there. So if it's not urgent I would go to another pharmacy.
You'll find it out outside of Oslo City, tram station close to Trafikanten.
If you want to save money don't by meds without prescription here. you might end up paying two or third as much you would do in ordinary food stores.
Lindoya is an idyllic little island and is worth visiting on your fjord sightseeing in Oslo.In 1920, Lindoya was the Oslo base for the pioneer Norwegian airline, Det Norske Luftfartrederiý, and its seaplanes
This is a summer place, the people here usually live here during the summer. There are 289 cabins here.